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Back in the Saddle!

We went to Wellington for a week to see the Government.

But no-one was there

Actually, we went to see Wynton Marsallis - something we will not forget in a hurry - he, and his Lincoln Centre Band is everything that you  could possibly imagine - something out of the "Big Band" era, and all maestros in their own right. Some old and some new pieces on the programme, but Ellington and Thelonius Monk stood out along with pieces written by band members, and Marsallis of course.

We actually saw Wynton in a quartet at the Village Vanguard in Greenwich Village 15 years ago - unforgettable. Hence the effort this time. Michael Fowler Centre chocker and a standing ovation like I have never seen followed by a voluntary in which he made his unpolished instrument sing and whisper - astonishing!

Saw a great reading at Circa that afternoon - and Anthony McCarten piece - you may have heard a Kim Hill interview on Saturday morning. It was Funny Girl - about the first (and only!) female Moslem stand-up comedian ("She had the right to remain silent - just not the ability") Don't miss the inevitable production - it is an absolute winner, exploring the family pressures is fulfilling her self awareness, and ambition to simply perform.

Anthony was born in Taranaki, but has lived in the UK forever and has won several awards including an Academy for screen-writing. This won is an absolute winner and the Wellington actors did a splendid job of bringing it to life in a packed venue with a line of chairs - nothing else. Ban Abdul (Azime) and Peter Hambleton (doubling as father Aristot, and impresario Manny Dorfman - "Jews and Moslems should stick together!") were outstanding. 

Tried the Mana bus to get home - okay except for an incompetent driver from Wellington to Taupo who appeared to have Parkinson's in his right leg and feathered the brake pedal the entire distance throwing us all forward like marionettes. The remander of the trip was fine.

Catching with with old friends is always a bonus, and with great weather to boot, it was a memorable trip.




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